Pliny the Elder

Naturalist / Writer

Born: 23
Died: 24 August 79 (Got too close to an erupting volcano)
Birthplace: Como, Italy
Best known as: The author of Natural History
Gaius Plinius Secundas (Pliny the Elder) was a Roman official and military officer who also wrote as a naturalist, biographer and historian. He is most known for his only extant work, a 37-volume Natural History that served as the basis for scientific knowledge for centuries. Pliny wrote in Latin, using mostly Greek sources and his own observations (and vivid imagination). In 79 A.D., when Mt. Vesuvius erupted, Pliny was a naval commander at the Bay of Naples. While attempting to get closer to the volcano and possibly effect a rescue, Pliny was overcome with fumes and died.
Extra credit:

His nephew Pliny the Younger also was a writer and historian, as well as a Roman senator.

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